ARGYLE manager Derek Adams believes his side’s 2-1 defeat to Exeter City hinged on one particular set of events in the game.
The visiting Grecians managed to spoil the sold-out party at Home Park, ending a run of three straight defeats to the Greens courtesy of a pair of goals from Ryan Harley.
Harley’s first came from the spot following a penalty decision given against Kelvin Mellor, after Jake Jervis appeared to be through on goal at the other end of the field, until referee Graham Scott gave a foul against the forward.
“The game obviously changes when Jake Jervis has gone through and the referee gives a foul,” said Derek.
“I’m not sure if it was a push or not, then Kelvin Mellor gives away a penalty. The game hinges on that moment. It shouldn’t have been given away, the penalty – it was bad play.
“The second goal we should’ve shut down on the edge of the box, but other than that, I don’t think there were too many opportunities for them in the game.
“We’re disappointed, because we went in at half time 2-0, and didn’t feel there was much in the game to make it 2-0. They got bodies behind the ball. They fought their corner well and were able to come away with a victory.”
The Pilgrims responded in the second half and brought themselves back into the game, courtesy of Oscar Threlkeld’s first professional goal. Derek’s side certainly rallied, and had their fair share of chances to get back on level terms – an end result that they would have more than deserved, according to the boss.
“I think that, with the chances we created,” said Adams, “and the amount of the ball we had in and around Exeter’s penalty area, we definitely should’ve had more from the game than we got.
“I think that the way we pushed on and tried to get that second goal – we had enough time to do that. We had a long-range strike from Graham Carey, we’ve had a free-kick from Carey, we’ve had [Jake] Jervis, [Ryan] Brunt, [Curtis] Nelson, all having opportunities as well. We’ve had a lot of play in and around their area.
“We had to come out in the second half and go at them. We did that. We became more direct in the game, because it was the nature of how we thought we could get back into the game, and we got back in it with a strike from Oscar Threlkeld.
“We’re on 38 points, but you would’ve always liked to have picked up the win today in the derby. We haven’t done that, and we’ll move onto the next day.”